The onesie that turns you into a Wi-Fi hotspot
Could Wi-Fi onesies be the future?
A Dutch fashion designer has come up with a new kind of wearable technology, a Wi-Fi enabled onesie.
Borre Akkersdijk began experimenting with a circular knitting machine in 2009 to knit two layers of fine cotton thread enveloping a synthetic fibre, Sky News reported.
Now he has pushed the technique further by running copper wire through the material during the manufacturing process.
The wires can be hooked up to chips and connectivity devices, and he has created two prototype outfits called BB.Suits.
According to Akkersdijk: "This suit is to show that wearable technology will be the future. A future where people wearing hi-tech clothes is the most natural thing in the world. The concept is the result of a great collaboration between ByBorre, a fabric innovation brand, Eindhoven University of Technology, 22Tracks, a music platform, CRISP, Daan Spangenberg Graphics and Want.nl, a Dutch online magazine about Technology and Gadgets.
Together, we want to show the ideas and concepts we have about wearable technology. We think garments are one of the exciting futures for interface design, connecting the wearer to people and places, becoming the ideal interface for many new user experiences."
Limitations with current chip technology mean that that onesie is unlikely to hit shops any time soon.
"The copper goes in during the manufacturing process, and big spots are left open within the design so we can put chips and stuff in. Wearable technology is really in the beginning stage, and at the moment there are no chips that can be washed." Akkersdijk said.
The BB.Suit, containing full Wifi, GPS, Bluetooth and NFC is bulky because batteries and processor boards are hidden in the suit's pockets. It was recently tested at a technology festival, using it to broadcast Akkersdijk's location on Google Maps.